New report aims to support Spanish investment in Victoria

New report aims to support Spanish investment in Victoria

A new report out of the Future Europe Series, delivered by RMIT Europe and the State of Victoria’s European Trade and Investment office, has made recommendations in skills, innovation and digitalisation for Spanish companies investing in infrastructure and energy projects in Victoria, Australia.

The report – Building for the future: Spain and Victoria, Australia (PDF 740KB) – reveals the opportunities and challenges that will require bilateral cooperation and the strengthening of partnerships for Spanish investment in the Australian state. 

With input from Spanish and Australian industry, government and academic experts, the report’s key recommendations include:

  • Innovation ecosystems need more development: Innovation is challenging to transfer locally and at a global scale. Individuals will need to learn how to integrate technology into their day-to-day work. Relationships with start-ups, suppliers and universities are important for realising innovation and digitalisation.

  • Industry-university partnerships must extend innovation into communities: It is important to extend innovation beyond projects, ensuring that innovation permeates into the community and there is a better understanding as to what innovation and digitalisation means for them.

  • Cities and regions can scale up innovation: Cities and regions play an important role in scaling up innovation through their local investments and infrastructure planning. National governments must work with partners in implementing these solutions on a large scale, increasingly harnessing strategic partnerships among diverse sectors, academic institutions and communities to foster the innovation ecosystem’s development.

  • The need to build skills in innovation: The speed of innovation cycles has accelerated and presents one of the greatest challenges as to how we build up skills of the future to keep up with and adapt to the speed of innovation. 

  • Sustainability is mission critical: Sustainability needs to be considered in all of our activities to achieve the mission and goals we have set for our industry and for society to reduce carbon emissions.
Heading - 1 The new report is an outcome of the Future Europe Series, an initiative of RMIT Europe and the State of Victoria’s European Trade and Investment office.

Gönül Serbest, Commissioner for Victoria to Europe, Middle East, Türkiye and Africa, said the report is intended to serve as a comprehensive resource for Spanish companies interested in investing in Victoria’s dynamic economy and contributing to building its future.

"Trade and investment links between Victoria and Spain are strong and growing, with Spanish companies bringing significant expertise in the transport, infrastructure and renewable energy sectors, supporting the Victorian Government’s commitment to achieve its net-zero emissions target by 2045," she said. 

"Prominent Spanish companies with operations and presence in Victoria include ACCIONA, Iberdrola, Blue Float, Wallbox and Sener, among others.

"Together with the insights of experts from industry, government and academia and in the context of Spain and Victoria bilateral relations, the Future Europe Series aims to shed light on the skills, innovation and digitalisation needs as we transition our businesses and our society towards a sustainable future / decarbonised economy," she said. 

Heading - 1 The report's insights were captured at the future Europe Series roundtable in Madrid, Spain. L-R: Miquel Rey (Eurecat), Professor Alec Cameron (RMIT), Carmen Noguero Galilea (Instituto Cervantes), Carlos Blanco Seijo (Navantia), Australian Ambassador to Spain H.E. Sophia McIntyre, Gönül Serbest (State of Victoria’s European Trade and Investment office), Marta Fernandez (RMIT Europe), Olatz Pombo (Arup), Marcos Garcia Alberti (Politecnica Madrid), Jesus Angel Garcia, (Indra), Laura Tordera (Ferrovial).

Professor Marta Fernandez, Executive Director at RMIT Europe, said the insights shared in the report indicate both the challenges and opportunities in making the low carbon transition a reality. 

"As RMIT University’s European Innovation Hub, we are committed to supporting the growing economic relationship between Spain and Victoria through partnerships in research and innovation, community engagement, education and talent solutions," she said.

"But there is still much more to be done.

"Infrastructure and the energy transition are pillars of the bilateral economic cooperation between Spain and Victoria with these sectors critical to the health and future of the Australian economy, more broadly.

"Our efforts with industry, government and research partners need to go beyond sustainable practices and look to regenerative futures as a way of renewing and revitalising social, economic and environmental systems," she said. 

The new report is an outcome of the Future Europe Series, an initiative of RMIT Europe and the State of Victoria’s European Trade and Investment office. 

It is the first of three reports, with further insights set to be published for French and Italian companies investing in Victoria. 

Story: Karen Matthews


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  • RMIT Europe
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RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business - Artwork 'Luwaytini' by Mark Cleaver, Palawa.